The lost art of the letter

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by cornetgirl, Aug 1, 2005.

  1. cornetgirl

    cornetgirl Active Member

    Am I one of the few people in the world who still loves writing and receiving handwritten letters?

    I've had penfriends since I was 8 and still have about 10 who I actively write to (usually about once a month). The reason I decided to post about this was that I'm actually meeting one of them next month, which I'm pretty excited about.

    So...anyone else into letterwriting here?? (Maybe we should set up a banding penpal service - adopt a cornet player from overseas or something!)

    Rach x
  2. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    you can all adopt me ;)

    Unfortunately, I don't really like to hand-write letters, particularly due to my sloppy handwriting. When I have to write a long text by hand, i usually try to start out very tidy, but half way through the page it always starts to graually deteriorate, and at the end of page one, it sometimes is even hard for myself to recognize what I've written :redface:.

    Also, when I had to write a text by hand not so long ago, i noticed something very strange. i think I have gotten used to backspace, copy-paste and these kind of things so much, that I found it very hard to directly put a sentence on paper (without extensive tipp-ex use)!
  3. Di

    Di Active Member

    I'm with Jan on this I'm afraid. I spend so much time attached to a keyboard, been a typist nearly all my working life, I find it difficult to write anything properly any more. :(
  4. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    i'd love a band penpal! i used to have a penpal but he moved and never wrote too me again :( i reckon we should start a penpal service! I love recieving hadwritten letters it makes a lovely change from bank statements and phone bills!
  5. yonhee

    yonhee Active Member

    OK *adopts Jan* :tongue: :rolleyes:

    We had some kind of pen pal thing organised by school, it was with people from some other school in Madagascar that we have links with or somthing. I wrote about two letters then we both gave up because we I never knew what to say and I dont think she did either... Im rubbish at writing letters I always repeat myself several times :oops:
  6. drummergurl

    drummergurl Active Member

  7. sugarandspice

    sugarandspice Active Member

    i sent postcards when i was in greece, thats the closest ive come to writting a letter- the first line was "it's killing me not being able to text!!" :)
  8. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    I think you should be able to text from abroad without any problems. At least I do it all of the time... I don't know about Greece though.
    Of course it costs a little bit more then at home :( (maybe even more then sending a letter or postcard... ;) )
  9. sugarandspice

    sugarandspice Active Member

    i know i know, but you see use my phone far too much- have 1000 texts a month allowance which i always go over- so my plan was to take a week off from texting while i was away, turning my phone off at air port and not turing it back on till till we re-landed.........plane took off monday was off.....arrived in greece, and decided to have phone on but not actually send any thursday i had text!! I'm so weak!!
  10. Steve

    Steve Active Member

    I enjoy letter writing as a novelty but that is about it. I remember sending some to freinds and family between holidays last year as I only had a few days and knew they were mostly away anyway. I agree it is much more personal and more thought goes into a letter than a text / email and it is a lovely suprise in the morning when it arrives.

    I hadnt written one for ages before the last lot and it turned into a commentary of how hard it was to keep the writing neat and how hard it was to write at the bottom of the page.

    Then I realised I had my mums handwriting so havent written since. :(
  11. flower girl

    flower girl Member

    i hate writing letters, i dont see the point when u can txt, its just as cheap (well for me anyway) and you dont have to wait as long for a reply
  12. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    I just remember about my friend who writes handwritten letters to her godmother, they are always realllly long (like 3/4 pages) and they detail everything thats happened in her day to day life, she talks in them like she's having a conversation with her godmother and there great fun too read! Yes it takes them ages to reply (would do if they write 3/4 pages each time!!) but its all the more fun for her to recieve them because she doesn't know when she's going too! I wish I had someone I could write letters too like that!!
  13. brasscrest

    brasscrest Active Member

    But all forms of electronic communication are impermanent. The advantage of a paper document is that it is a more permanent record.

    In twenty years, all current forms of computer storage will be obsolete. But I can still read letters written by my great-grandparents a hundred years ago.

    The great irony of the "Information Age" is that the more people communicate, the less is preserved for the future.
  14. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    Exactly! Its just as much fun too read letters you recieved 10 years ago as it is too receive a new letter through the door! I reallllllly want to write a letter too somebody now :tongue:

    What do you moddy mods think about starting a tMP penpal scheme type of thing??
  15. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    This is already true! My wife's PhD thesis was written on our (expensive at the time) Tandy TRS80 Model 1 computer (in the days before the IBM PC!!!). Its on 5.25" floppies, written in "Tandy format", and in Scripsit (a Tandy Wordprocessor).

    "Modern" PCs won't read the disks easily (40Track,Double Density, single sided, from what I remember), let alone deal with the wordprocessor's file format.

    If (unlikely - as molecular biology has moved on a lot since then!) we wanted it electronically again, it would probably be simpler to use OCR (Optical Character Recognition) to "read" one of the paper copies of the book than to convert the disks!!!

    I have been known (even quite recently) to handwrite letters, when I want to say things in a logical manner but more "personnaly" than in typescript / email. Also, I can sit and write in the car, whereas I don't have a laptop for typing on...

    If you really insist on using a keyboard, then learn to touch type - that way at least you are capable of writing "correct English" (as opposed to txt spk!) when you want to!

  16. The Cornet King

    The Cornet King Active Member

    I'd have to agree with that first statement, theres something about old letters, that when you go back and read them, give you a really good feeling. Something you can't get with a text message or e mail.
    These days letter writing is quite a long winded way of communicating, in the age of texts, e mail, video messaging, and it can be quite annoying making the effort to write a handwritten letter, however they do have a certain charm i must admit.
    I do miss writing to an old pen friend i had, however that broke down some 4 years ago now i think...shame.

    tMP penpal scheme...great idea. :biggrin:
  17. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    Another point when writing a letter is that you have to think about what you want to say before you commit it to the paper as there's no <delete> key :) I find this in itself makes for more coherent thought as I hate having to copy out what I'm writing because there are too many crossings out.

    How many times when we're typing a letter do we go back and revise, revise and revise again....?

    (Writing a letter is also practice for writing exam answers that some of us still do from time to time!)

  18. Big Twigge

    Big Twigge Active Member

    Not that I write many letters, I fall into the email category I'm afraid. But I have recently rekindled my love of writing in fountain pen, my writing looks so much neater - you should all write your letters in proper ink!
  19. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    I would write with a fountain pen, but I smudge it! I'm 'Cack-handed' (left handed to you and I!) so I have terrible problems writing in anything other than a biro! Its probably a very poor excuse, but nevermind!
  20. HorniKaz

    HorniKaz Supporting Member

    There's nothing better than coming across old letters when you're having a clear out. I found some the other day from a lad that I went to school with who joined the army. Had completely forgotten about him. Also, some from a girl I went to college with who lives in Dunfries. She was pouring her heart out to me about a lad who was treating her like s***. Rang her parents, got her number, gave her a bell. She's married to him now!! We had a good laugh about what she'd written. :) There's definately something about a letter. Much more personal & there for ever. Or until you decide to shred it!! :tongue:

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